Lucas Williams, Staff Writer
The rap gods have answered my prayers: 2 Chainz is running for political office. You’re welcome, America. After debating with HLN personality Nancy Grace on Jan. 13 about the legalization of marijuana (guess which side he was on), 2 Chainz has expressed interest in running for mayor of his hometown of College Park, Georgia. The “I Luv Dem Strippers” rapper told the Atlanta Journal Constitution on Jan. 27, “I am looking forward to running at the end of this year or next year.”
However, as the incumbent mayor of College Park, Jack Longino, points out, 2 Chainz is not registered to vote in College Park, but in the neighboring town of Palmetto. Longino also expressed doubts that 2 Chainz, being a multi-million dollar rapper, actually lives in College Park. In spite of these minor obstacles, I’m confident Mr. Chainz will find a way to run.
And when 2 Chainz does end up running for mayoral office, he may have a chance at winning. Current mayor Jack Longino only won the last election with 769 votes out of 1,100 votes cast. College Park’s population is 14,000 people, 80 percent of which is black. 2 Chainz’s celebrity status could push potential voters to the polls out of simple name recognition (though Chainz’s birth name, Tauheed Epps, would probably be the name on the ballot). Plus, how cool would it be to say 2 Chainz is your mayor?
But 2 Chainz’s qualifications seem strong. The rapper, formerly known as Tity Boi, reportedly graduated second in his high school class and studied psychology at Alabama State University while continuing to earn good grades. A college degree isn’t even required to run for mayor, so Chainz’s time in college is just a bonus. Managing the 2 Chainz brand and image is a plus, too. And with an established public relations team behind him, 2 Chainz could run a deadly campaign. If he and his marketing team are skilled enough to get him to his level of fame, they could do some real damage on a mayoral campaign. He can fund his own political ads and turn concerts into campaign rallies.
If his debate with the ever-passionate Nancy Grace is any indication, Chainz is shrewd enough to navigate the hostile political climate as well. In what was obviously set up to be a joke debate, 2 Chainz persevered through Grace’s patronizing statements and brought up solid points about legalizing marijuana all while staying calm and refusing to be the butt of the network’s joke.
Though 2 Chainz has been charged with possession of codeine and promethazine (common ingredients in sizzurp) in the past, these incidents may not be that damaging to his campaign. Heck, if former Toronto Mayor Rob Ford could stay in office for four years, 2 Chainz can get elected for at least one term in the face of former felonies.
But this is politics. Where does 2 Chainz stand on the issues? Well, unsurprisingly, he favors marijuana legalization, though a mayor probably can’t do anything about that. Mr. Chainz is also a proponent for extending voting rights to incarcerated Americans. In fact, 2 Chainz believes himself to be such a strong candidate that in a 2012 interview for The Huffington Post, he expressed confidence that he could beat then-presidential candidate Mitt Romney. With this much confidence, 2 Chainz must have quite the campaign in store.
I, for one, am excited for 2 Chainz to run for mayor. With all of the craziness in everyday life, the best thing a mayor can provide is entertainment. Well, entertainment and the necessary tools with which a city can become a prosperous and happy environment. But I’m sure 2 Chainz has that covered, too.